HOUSTON, Texans (KTRK) -- What day is it? It's game day, Houston! The Houston Texans open the 2022 preseason by taking to the turf Saturday night against the New Orleans Saints for the 11th time in preseason play.
The video above is from our 24/7 Livestream.
Texans' head coach Lovie Smith will lead the hometown team against New Orleans for the first time. Smith was formerly Houston's associate head coach and defensive coordinator during the 2021 NFL season.
The opposing team will also be led by a first-time head coach, Dennis Allen, who was a former defensive back for Texas A&M. After 12 seasons with the Saints coaching staff and six-plus seasons as the defensive coordinator, he assumed the HC position.
In 10 seasons from 2008-2017, the Texans and the Saints, both 0-0, have met for a total of nine preseason games, splitting the series victories with five games a piece. This preseason battle will be the first time the teams have met since the Saints beat the Texans 13-0 on Aug. 26. 2017.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
Entering his second season, Texans quarterback Davis Mills has all eyes on him. Mills made 11 starts as a rookie in 2021 and set a Texans rookie record by finishing the year with 2,664 passing yards. In addition, he completed 263 out of 394 attempts for 16 touchdowns, ten interceptions, and an 88.8 passer rate.
Veteran wide receiver Brandin Cooks is returning after catching a career-high 90 receptions for 1,037 yards and six touchdowns during the 2021 NFL season. Cooks recently signed a contract extension with the Texans during the 2022 off-season.
Watch ABC13's 30-minute Countdown to Kickoff Special starting at 6:30 p.m., before the Texans take on the Saints at NRG Stadium at 7 p.m., airing on ABC.